Former Lions WR Calvin Johnson Says He Smoked Before Every Game At End Of His Career

Calvin Johnson
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A lot of people speak about former NFL receiver Calvin Johnson as a “what could have been” story.

That shouldn’t be the case when you look at the stats and records he was able to achieve in his short, legendary career with the Detroit Lions. And the fact that he’s a Hall of Famer…

Nicknamed “Megatron” because of his size and stature, Johnson was an unstoppable force out on the field. During his time in Detroit, he racked up 11,619 receiving yards and 731 receptions, which both still stand as Lions’ career records.

He may have been the most dominant wide receiver to ever play the game, and that’s why so many people were caught off guard when he shockingly announced his retirement from the NFL in 2015.

Over the years, we’ve found out that Johnson put an extensive amount of thought into that decision, and ultimately decided to walk away from the game for the betterment of his health.

“Megatron” started in 130 of his 135 career games, but often played banged up and injured. Things got so bad towards the end of his career that Johnson eventually decided to discretely go against the NFL’s banned substance policy.

In the modern day NFL, players are only tested once a year for marijuana, and it’s right before training camp. The drug is still on the banned substances list (for now), but the league just doesn’t really test for it anymore.

Even if a player were to test positive for marijuana, they would just be subject to pay a monetary fine. Back in Calvin Johnson’s playing days (saying that makes me feel really old), NFL players were being tested a lot more for marijuana, and could face multi-game suspensions if they tested positive.

Johnson thought the benefits of smoking marijuana back then outweighed the risks, as he told Robert Griffin III on a recent episode of RG3 and The Ones.

Griffin asked Johnson if he ever smoked before his NFL games, and “Megatron” admitted that he did in the final year of his career:

“Yes I have. There were some games there (at the) end of my career man, I was like ‘I don’t know how I’m (going to) make it today. Let me get my mind right.’ It was my last year when I was barely hanging on.”

Knowing that makes Johnson’s retirement a little less shocking, and supports Travis Kelce’s theory that over 80% of players in the NFL are smoking weed.

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock